Talks / School Visits

Past talks are listed in the Archive.

Over the years I have given talks at various schools, including
  • Cheshire Academy
  • The Gunnery
  • Hotchkiss
  • Hyde
  • Pomfret
  • St. Paul’s
In additional to class visits, I have lectured on such topics as "Who Are the Greatest Writers of All Time?", "Why the Novel Matters?", "Why Real Men Can Love Jane Austen," "Dickens and the Art of the Novel," "The Genius of James Joyce," "The Greatness of Tolstoy," and "The Landscape of American Literature."
Contact me if interested in arranging a talk/school visit

2008

September 30th A Series of Talks on Great Works of Irish Literature: William Butler Yeats’s "Easter 1916"

Litchfield Community Center, Tuesday, September 30th, 6:30 – 8: 30 pm
Yeats’s remarkable poetic response to the Easter Rising, the catalyst to the Irish war of independence from Britain is one of monumental poems in twentieth-century literature.

Location map.

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Litchfield Talks 2 Yeats.doc, 71.50 Kb
Delivered at the Litchfield Community Center, September 30, 2008
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September 30<sup>th</sup> A Series of Talks on Great Works of Irish Literature: William Butler Yeats’s "Easter 1916"In it Yeats eulogizes the executed leaders of the Rising, meditates on implications of violent nationalism and the role of the poet in shaping political and cultural debate, while also making a last appeal to the great love of his life, the recently widowed Maude Gonne. The workshop will explore all of these issues in a close reading of the poem and its historical and artistic contexts.

October 07th A Series of Talks on Great Works of Irish Literature: James Joyce's "The Dead"

Litchfield Community Center, Tuesday, October 7, 2008, 6:30 – 8: 30 pm
Arguably the greatest short story ever written, Joyce’s “The Dead” is the concluding story in his milestone collection Dubliners.
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Litchfield Talks 2 Joyce.doc, 87.50 Kb
Delivered at Litchfield Community Center, October 7, 2008
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October 07<sup>th</sup> A Series of Talks on Great Works of Irish Literature: James JoyceSet during a Christmas party in Dublin, the story’s protagonist, Gabriel Conroy undergoes a series of challenges to his sense of himself, his wife, and existence itself. “The Dead” manages to combine a compelling human story with Joyce’s anatomy of life in Ireland and Dublin at the turn of the century, while preparing the ground for Joyce’s great novel, Ulysses. The workshop will consider how “The Dead” manages to generate its multiple meanings and significance in the canon of Ireland’s master fiction writer.

October 14th A Series of Talks on Great Works of Irish Literature: Brian Friel's Translations

Litchfield Community Center, Tuesday, October 14, 2008, 6:00 – 7: 30 pm
By helping to frame the debate over issues of Irish identity and politics, no other Irish play has been as crucial as Brian Friel’s Translations.
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Litchfield Talks2-Friel.doc, 82.50 Kb
Delivered at the Litchfield Community Center, October 14, 2008
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Premiering in Derry at the heights of the Troubles, Translations looks back at a decisive moment in Irish history in the nineteenth century when native Irish language and culture were being “translated” by English, while considering issues as the role language plays in shaping our understanding of self and society and the various obligations and challenges we have truly understanding one another. The workshop will examine Translations from multiple viewpoints to underscore the artistry and mastery of one of the world’s greatest living playwrights.